Starfield’s Steam stats suggest it’s on life support

Starfield’s Steam stats suggest it’s on life support
Images via Bethesda

Written by 

Joseph Kime

Published 

12th Feb 2024 10:50

Although it was pitched as Bethesda's next big thing, Starfield hasn't exactly been in tip-top shape. The sci-fi explorer has been in the works for a long time, and it makes sense that Bethesda would hedge all of its bets on its success - after all, it was toted as Skyrim in space, so what could go wrong?

If we were Bethesda, we'd be sorry we'd asked. The game didn't quite work for fans the way they were hoping, as Starfield has raised serious questions about fast travel in video games, overall engagement in a near-infinite world, and if Bethesda's game design is too outdated to stick in the 2020s.

Now, it looks like players are voting with their playtime, as Starfield's player count suggests the 2023 game is already in pretty rough shape.

Starfield's Steam player count is at an all-time low 

The detailed stats for Starfield on SteamDB, displaying an all-time peak of 330,723, and a concurrent player count of 4,339.
Click to enlarge
Image via SteamDB

Steam players clearly aren't engaging with Starfield as they once were, as new statistics indicate that it's floating in space without so much as a hand to hold.

SteamDB has reported that Starfield reached a concurrent player count of 330,273 at launch, which is mighty impressive for any game that Bethesda doesn't develop - and now, sadly, numbers have sunk to less than 4,500 players at the time of writing.

A 97% dropoff of players is a brutal statistic that indicates just how poor engagement is with those playing Starfield on PC through Steam, but of course, there are other means of playing the game on the platform.

Many are far more likely to pick the game up via PC's Game Pass, and while it makes perfect sense that you would opt for this or even pick up an Xbox in order to play the game, it's still not a good look for the numbers engaging via Steam. Especially as Steam is the biggest digital storefront that PC has to offer.

Will Starfield bounce back?

A player explores a desolate planet in Starfield.
Click to enlarge
Image via Bethesda

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There are still more players to be seen on Xbox and on PC via Xbox's launcher, but this slump, along with Starfield's dwindling presence on Xbox's Most Played charts (sitting behind Red Dead Redemption 2 and Destiny 2), suggests that the game has sunk to perhaps an inescapable low.

Of course, the expected Shattered Space DLC will bring with it a boost to player numbers. Still, it'd take a lot for Starfield to win players over again, considering their lofty concerns with the way that it works. Fingers crossed, we can return to space in our droves again because if this DLC doesn't work, who knows what will happen to Starfield. 

Joseph Kime is the Senior Trending News Journalist for GGRecon from Devon, UK. Before graduating from MarJon University with a degree in Journalism, he started writing music reviews for his own website before writing for the likes of FANDOM, Zavvi and The Digital Fix. He is host of the Big Screen Book Club podcast, and author of Building A Universe, a book that chronicles the history of superhero movies. His favourite games include DOOM (2016), Celeste and Pokemon Emerald.

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